After three days of hearings on the climate bill this week, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee planned to start marking up the legislation on Tuesday. Or, at least the Democrats on the panel intended to do so. The Republicans are now threatening to boycott the session—which could prevent Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Ca.) from moving the legislation out of her committee.
Boxer doesn't need Republicans to actually vote for the bill—Democrats hold a 12-7 majority on the panel. But she does need two GOP senators present to hold a markup, according to committee rules. The proposed boycott is apparently being lead by Sens. George Voinovich of Ohio and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee. Voinovich says he wants extra time so the EPA can produce a more comprehensive assessment of the bill (read: an assessment that he agrees with).